Blog

Running with the Wetzels

LA Phil violist Mick Wetzel takes a break from his run in London to pose for a photo.

Stacy and I have been touring with major symphony orchestras for 30 years. Before we came to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, we played with the San Francisco Symphony.. This has been a wonderful privilege to have been able to do this and most especially together.

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Wish You Were Here

Gustavo walks onto the Barbican stage to start the final London performance of the LA Phil's 2013 tour.

Well, the London leg of the LA Phil's 2013 Tour is very nearly in the books. After the week the LA Phil has had - last night's European premiere of John Adams' The Gospel According to the Other Mary; the three-day Future Play Symposium at the Barbican Centre that culminated in the rousing, moving Discover Dudamel event; and the first-ever Green Umbrella new music program played on foreign soil - a program that consists of favorites like Debussy's La mer and Stravinsky's The Firebird can feel downright comforting.

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Dudamel, Discovered

Tony Brown, Executive Director of Heart of Los Angeles and Raymond, YOLA clarinetist, pose with Gustavo after the Discover Dudamel event at the Barbican.

One of the highlights of the LA Phil's residency at the Barbican was the Discover Dudamel event on MAR 15, during which the LA Phil's Music Director led 100-plus young musicians, from 10 youth orchestras (including members of our own YOLA) in a rehearsal of Tchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture.

We've got some descriptions of the event from the particpants forthcoming - and Brian Lauritzen from KUSC and the Barbican have some fine coverage up to hold you over --  but meanwhile, enjoy some photos of this once-in-a-lifetime event.

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YOLA Tour Diary, Part 1

Showtime!

The European premiere of John Adams' The Gospel According to the Other Mary at London's Barbican Centre is mere moments away and we're feeling the excitement all the way across the pond.

Here's a short clip of John Adams offering some insight into what's it's taken to put this work on the stage after its concert premiere last May, as well as some photos from London that show just a hint of what's gone into taking this massive new work - consisting of a full orchestra, six singers, three dancers and the Los Angeles Master Chorale - on tour.

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Walking In London

Nathan Cole, the LA Phil's First Associate Concertmaster, takes a moment to pose with composer and LA Phil Creative Chair John Adams.

Back in London, one of my favorite cities to tour! It's always alive, and I speak the language.

Since my flight and trip to the hotel were fairly easy, I found myself with more energy than I'm used to for the first day of tour. So even though it was rainy and getting dark, I knew I had to take out the camera for a night walk. The combination of rain, city lights, and sunset was a lucky one. The folks eating at this cafe on the Serpentine in Hyde Park had it good!

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Friends of the Phil

It's not that we don't appreciate you following along with the orchestra's adventures on this blog - we do, immensely - but did you know there's a lot of other great coverage of the LA Phil's International Residency at the Barbican? And the sources...well, they're not exactly surprising, since the fine organizations also blogging are longtime friends, cohorts, collaborators and compadres of ours.

First off, the very excellent Barbican Centre is doing their own blog, which makes sense, since this whole event is happening right there. They're on the scene and they're doing it right - from audio clips of keynote speeches to photos of Gustavo leading the Discover Dudamel event, they've got things covered across the pond.

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A Packed House

David Bohnett with Kiki and David Gindler

LA Phil Chairman David Bohnett with Kiki and David Gindler

Twelve hundred people came to see the LA Phil at the Barbican last night. Not bad for a weekday new music program performed by a visiting orchestra. The Phil could not have asked for a more enthusiastic audience--"the most spoiled musical audience in the world," according to The Telegraph.

But the excitement for many of us began long before the first note. How cool to see the LA Phil's familiar logo lighting the iconic wood walls encircling the Barbican stage? Pretty darn cool, indeed.

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The London Connection

 

This time 10 years ago, I was living in Hong Kong with my husband. We had relocated there so we could be together as a family while my husband was working on a project for his company. The LAPhil had granted me a Leave of Absence so that we could make this move. During our time there we met other "Expats" who had moved from other parts of the world for similar reasons. We had friends from Scotland, England, the US,  and also Hong Kong.

After we moved back to LA to resume our lives and professions we stayed in contact with all these friends. Over the years, some friends repatriated to their countries of origin. Two couples from England moved back and one couple we knew from LA moved to London.

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Just The Two of Us...

John Adams and Gustavo share a moment backstage at the Barbican Centre. John just led the LA Phil New Music Group in his Son of Chamber Symphony and has passed the baton off to Gustavo, who is ready to conduct Unsuk Chin's Graffiti and Josesph Pereira's "Concerto for Percussion and Chamber Orchestra."

This is why we go on tour.

We go on tour to promote the orchestra. We go on tour to play in front of audiences that might not have the chance to see us otherwise. We go on tour to play a program that leaves everyone saying "Wow - that's a program that only the LA Phil would play."

And we go on tour for moments like this.

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